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What the foreclosure settlement means for you

Monday - 2/13/2012, 4:02pm  ET

WASHINGTON - Last week's mega foreclosure settlement has many homeowners in the Washington region asking if they are owed money.

Here are some answers:

First, the entire region is included in the settlement. Second, homeowners need to have their home loan serviced at one of these five banks: Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Ally Financial.

(A mortgage servicer is the company you make your payment to each month.)

For loan modifications and refinance options, borrowers may be contacted directly by one of the five participating mortgage servicers.

For borrowers who lost their home to foreclosure between Jan. 1, 2008 and Dec. 31, 2011, a settlement administrator designated by the attorneys general will send claim forms to persons eligible for cash restitution.

If you think you might qualify and you have not been contacted by your bank, you are encouraged to contact your servicer to see if you are eligible.

Don't expect to be contacted immediately. It's going to take at least six to nine months for the settlement administrator, attorneys general and the mortgage servicers to work together to identify homeowners eligible for the immediate cash payments, principal reductions and refinancing.

Those eligible will receive letters.

* For more information on whether you may qualify, click here.

Darci Marchese contributed to this report. Follow Darci and WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)